A great deal of research conducted about family meal time shows that children and adults both agree that it is important, yet only about half of teenagers said they had regular family meals (1). And, obviously, they want to have that time with their parents. Other research suggests a correlation between regular family meals and better grades, lower marijuana and other drug use, lower chances of eating disorders, lower rates of risky sexual behavior, less chance of depression or suicide, and an increase in healthy eating habits (2). How can this not be one of the most important things done as a family??
As a result of regularly sitting down as a family without the distraction of TVs, phones, etc, young people have a greater chance of acquiring an expanded vocabulary as a result of regular conversation with adults and kids tend were 40% more likely to earn A’s and B’s in school (1). All of the above factors combine to create less stress for everyone involved because there are less poor report cards and discipline problems in and out of school.
Schedules these days are crazy. Everyone’s doing something: dance, soccer, football, clubs, youth groups and the list can go on and on and on. But, family meals do not need to be long, nor do they have to be elaborate to get the job done. Sometimes they may be as quick and 15 minutes, they may be later than usual or they may be over paper plates and take-out, but the importance remains the same. It’s never to early to start this ritual in your home, and there are tons of websites that provide quick, easy, healthy meals that can be cooked in a hurry if time is in short supply around your house like it is at mine! The benefits are priceless, so start today!!
More related articles: